to Your E-Health
by Kathryn Lurie
Internet provides simple, easy-to-use tools to live a healthier
days, where do you go to research what that new mole on your
arm might mean? Or how you can most effectively sculpt your
calves? Or find out how many calories a doughnut actually
has? The doctor? The library? Don’t be ridiculous. People
don’t have time for all that nonsense. People need quick answers,
easy solutions, and health information that’s only a click
away. Here are eight Web sites that, if used appropriately,
will help you to live a healthier life.
few years ago, Self magazine started a fitness program
they call the Self Challenge. It has proved useful for hundreds
of women, and even some men, over the years. The (free!) program
consists of effective workouts and suggested menus that will
help you to obtain a healthier, better body. Tools on the
Self Challenge Web site include workout logs that calculate
how many minutes you’ve exercised and how many calories you’ve
burned, a food diary to record your calorie intake, and forums
where you can chat with other Self challengers and even find
a local workout buddy. Plus, there are daily helpful hints
and prizes to win all the time. They’ll even send text messages
to your cell phone with nifty healthy-living tips!
of fitness, if you’re wondering exactly how many calories
(and how much fat, how many carbs, and how much sodium) are
in your morning Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, you can find out at
Calorie King. This Web site’s mission is “to help reverse
the continuing unhealthy American trend toward obesity, diabetes,
and other undesirable health conditions.” Not only do they
have nutritional information for most foods available at chain
eateries across the country, they also have a ton of useful
tools, including (just to name a few) information on how to
cut calories in cooking, health and nutrition quizzes to test
your knowledge, BMI (body mass index) calculators, support
forums and blogs.
you find yourself in a situation where all you have in your
cupboard is a can of coconut milk, and you have no idea what
to do with it, All Recipes can help. This cooking Web site
lets you search by (among other things) meal, available ingredients,
or genre (kosher, diet, low-carb or vegetarian, for example).
Visitors contribute their own recipes, and rate and comment
on other ones. Also, you’re able to build your own electronic
cookbook, where you can collect your favorite recipes. For
the math-impaired, the site will calculate how much more or
less ingredients you’ll need to double or half the recipe.
And most importantly, the recipes include nutritional information.
Watchers is a tried-and-true diet program that provides coaching
to help you lose weight, and support meetings to track your
progress. The Web site provides an Internet companion to help
you stay focused on your weight and health goals in-between
meetings. The site also provides an electronic Weight Watchers
points tracker, and smart solutions for diet-ruining cravings.
not saying that a visit to this Web site can replace a visit
to your real-life doctor, but for minor aches and pains, and
general health info, this site is the place to go. It can
even help you decide if a trip to the doc is really necessary.
WebMD can help to diagnose worrisome symptoms, and it provides
interactive checkups (answer questions and they’ll provide
you with a clinical summary of your responses and a take-action
plan). Also, use this site for researching medicines, tests
and diseases—they’re organized in efficient A-through-Z listings.
disease is the No. 1 killer of Americans, plain and simple.
The American Heart Association has lots of vital information
to help prevent you and your loved ones from becoming part
of that statistic. Learn everything from how to recognize
symptoms of a heart attack and how to keep your blood pressure
low to how heart disease affects men and women differently
and how to evaluate whether your lifestyle is heart-healthy.
Also, the AHA Web site provides information on how to volunteer,
which is good for the body and the soul.
the latest news and health information, along with health
calculators, online courses, medical advice and quizzes, from
the BBC’s health-specific Web site.
those of you trying to kick your nasty smoking habit, this
is an extremely useful tool. Just enter the time, day, and
date you quit, along with how many cigarettes you regularly
smoked and how much money you spent on them, and this Web
site will automatically tell you how long it’s been since
you had a smoke, and how much money you’ve saved (is there
anything more motivating than that?). Set Quit Meter as your
homepage for a daily reminder of how well you’re doing not
of the above Web sites are free to visitors with the exception
of Weight Watchers, which only costs money if you decide to
become a member.